Welcome to our newest ongoing series here at the Tavern! CHARACTER REFERENCE is a source for DMs to use to create NPCs or for Players to develop extraordinary out-of-the-box characters.  This is just the beginning.  It can be taken as is or tweaked to fit your individual needs.  As with all of THE MAGIC TAVERN’S material, YOU are an important part.  If you have ANYTHING to add, please feel free to comment or message us.  If it adds to the conversation, we may even post it in either an article or on our FACEBOOK page!  But with that said, let’s jump into it!

Aetris // Arcane Banker Creator: Panda

Today’s character is unique to say the least.  A combination of arcane skills, a proficiency for self-preservation, and a talent for the legal world of finance in a D&D setting. Aetris, as presented here, is a Tiefling banker.  Now, my first thought was ‘Why would anyone trust their money to a guy with horns?’  But, if taken in the grand scope of D&D, it actually makes sense.  Who else would you want handling contractual agreements?  Someone with infernal blood right?  We will be exploring the world of D&D banking in an upcoming article, but, suffice it to say, it’s just fitting.

Of course, like anything with these articles, when you build your own NPC or PC you can take on any race.  But, to us, this is the best build. 

We also started him in the Wizard Class of the School of Illusion.  At first, when thinking of illusion, you would think of deception and you wouldn’t be far from the facts with this character.  But, once again, who else would be better at verifying the validity of the gold, items and artifacts they deal in than an illusionist.  I mean, are you really going to try and pass that copper piece off as gold in this kind of character’s presence?  I think not!

FLAW: COWARDICE

While there is no mechanic in 5E that really uses Flaws, we feel that they are very important for the role playing aspect of the games. For this character, I would suggest assigning the flaw: COWARDICE.

Aetris is a craven coward.  He will not engage in any physical contact unless pushing into a corner.  And, even then, he’s more apt to try and talk his way out of it.  No, this arcane banker would rather drop fireballs from a distance, all the while hiding behind the muscle of the group.  Panda has inflicted his character with a disadvantage on all fear and intimidation checks up to 5th level.  As the character grows and learns to cope with this fear, he can begin to overcome this gradually maybe taking minuses on these checks from then on; starting high and scaling the minus down on the way to 20th level.  Maybe one of this character’s triumphs is a final overcoming of this cowardice with an amazing act of heroism in the end.

IN A FIGHT

Aetris is prone to assess the lay of the battlefield before joining in at all.  In fact, he is not so much calculating how to dispatch the enemy as he is plotting how to best keep himself out of harms way.  This may mean getting some distance from his attackers, finding shelter behind the fighter or paladin or maybe just not getting involved in the battle at all.  Now, this will definitely cause some turmoil among the players so play this kind of character carefully.  In the end, if his protection isn’t able to dispatch the enemy without him, he will be forced to join the fray and ‘do it himself’.

STORY HOOKS: Aetris can be used by the DM as a NPC in many ways.  Maybe he’s actually a banker in a town the PCs are visiting or possibly the bank is in the big town that’s the center of the first adventure arc.  Aetris, as created, is a big city kind of guy.  This person is used to money and likes all the great places to hide or take cover and all of the amenities that come with big city living.  But they could just easy be banished to some backwater bank for punishment.

Aetris can be a great patron.  Maybe bankroll their first great quest; being the payday at the end.  Or be the instigator of all of their adventures.  Maybe the banker/investor needs an armed guide to somewhere.  Taking this character’s cowardice, there would be no traveling alone especially if there’s money or valuables involved.

AS A PC : he could hook up with the party for protection.  This could open up some great subplots.  The character may have been sent by the bank to collect on a dept, scout out an investment or investments.  Maybe delivering a message or valuable along the way.

Aetris could be connected directly to the muscle of the group.  This way, you could play as a team within the party.  The fighter, paladin, barbarian…anything with a lot of hit points and able to deliver damage…could serve as a buffer in all battles.  It could be a very symbiotic relationship, however, Aetris is one to exploit the situation to his advantage every chance he gets.  This could open up a lot of character development as the relationship between the banker/wizard and the muscle grows to a powerful friendship or escalates into a confrontation as the muscle realizes he’s being used.  The options are endless.

WHY WIZARD? : As I said before, it just made sense.  All of the promised firepower of the Wizard would just appeal to the craven coward.  Adding on the focus on ILLUSION for subterfuge and evasion and, I think, PANDA’s got a win here.  Aetris would lean toward invisibility and escape coupled with high damage spells.  His focus on self-preservation and his reckless cowardice may make him dangerous to the group.  But his need to keep them around should keep this from getting ‘out of hand’.

At the bottom there will be links to where you can see our seggested spells for 5th and 10th level. As well as other things such as character sheets and pic bases for the use as an npc.

PLAYER OPTIONS : PANDA and myself discussed, at length, the possibility of this character either multiclassing with Rogue or out right developing the character as a Rogue.

As with all multiclassing, you will have to plot carefully as to not weaken the spellcasting end of the character.  But this may be workable if we develop Aetris as a Rogue with the ARCHTYPE to lend to his spellcasting as an assist to his stealth and deadly surprise attacks.  We finally decided that, if a person wanted to develop Aetris as a rogue, that the best archetype would be the MASTERMIND from XANATHAR’S GUIDE TO EVERYTHING p46. However, as an aside, I thought a possible option would be reworking the ARCANE TRICKSTER type with more damage than stealth and manual manipulation. However, as an aside, I thought a possible option would be reworking the ARCANE TRICKSTER type with more damage than stealth and manual manipulation.

IF you have any suggestions, please drop them below or check us out on social media.  We, like yourselves, are always looking for cool homebrew options and would even love to share them with ‘the class’. YOU are an integral part of the MAGIC TAVERN and your input is valued as you are virtually part of the team.

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